Farmstay U.S. Blog

Created for and by travelers and the farmers, these posts will cover a variety of topics related to farm stays in the U.S.

Archive for tag: Vermont

Grand View Farm - Washington, Vermont

overview

Grand View Farm was one of the earliest farms in the town of Washington, dating back to its initial purchase in 1794. Since then, it has passed through two other families and was finally purchased in 2004 by today’s owners the Goodling family. As the fourth family to own the farm, they have made substantial efforts to reestablish some of its agricultural history. Today, the farm’s main focus is fiber animals. The Goodlings also offer a Bed and Breakfast Farm Stay in their 19th century farmhouse. Enjoy a farm fresh organic breakfast of local foods and the farm’s own pure Vermont maple syrup, then spend some time exploring the beautiful Green Mountains and taking one of the classes offered at Grand View.

eveninghousefall

FARM STAY

houselivingrmkitchen

The Farmhouse Family Suite offers a warm and welcoming step back in history. With hand hewn exposed beams, wide wood paneling and antique four poster beds, you’ll enjoy a comfortable stay in this antique home setting. This two bedroom suite comes with a cozy wood stove, gas grill, candle lit dinners, plush robes, and modern conveniences to make you feel right at home.

bedbed2

Wake up to a farm fresh breakfast, then make your way outside to the porch for a relaxing and beautiful view overlooking the Green Mountains. If you feel up for it, you’re more than welcome to lend a hand with some of the farm chores. Seeking more adventure? Ask about one of the tours the farmers have put together for their guests, including excursions for cheese lovers, covered bridges, local foodies and outdoor enthusiasts.

pizzaporchvino

FARM ANIMALS AND PRODUCTS

lambtriollamassheeplamb

Grand View Farms main focus is raising Romney sheep for their superb fiber. Through proper practices in keeping a closed flock, practicing biodiversity, and maintaining a nutritional balance the Goodlings are better able to prevent disease and control parasites from entering their flock. They also have llamas and angora rabbits on the farm. The llamas act as guardians for the sheep and provide a unique fiber. The bunnies love their morning treats of fresh vegetables and fruits. Their fiber is spun into a soft yarn.

pigsrabbiteggs

Dedicated to high breeding standards Grand View Farm offers lovely, quality woolen goods for you and your home. The Goodling family prides itself for carrying on the traditional arts of knitting, weaving and spinning. For more information on the products produced on the farm, please visit their Grand View Farm Store.

sheeplamb2shearingblanket

FARM CLASSES

classclass2class3

If you want to expand your farm experience and knowledge take advantage of one of the multiple classes taught right there on the farm. From using locally grown plants as a natural dye to creating your own felted clasp purse or even working on a project of your own, Grand View Farm offers a welcoming and relaxed atmosphere perfect for working on your art projects.

For more information and reservations visit their Farm Stay Profile, Grand View Farm Website and Facebook page.

Photo Credit: Grand View Farm

Perry Family Farm - Northfield, Vermont

snowoverview

Welcoming, comfortable and green; three words that describe Perry Family Farm quite well. Originally from England, the Perry family moved to Vermont for the rural lifestyle. They purchased farm land and started building what is now a beautiful farm house on a working farm. Their goal is to produce locally grown food for their community and provide a memorable experience for their guests all while embracing good environmental practices. This small diverse farm can be found nestled in the Green Mountains of Central Vermont.

deckoverview falloverview

 

FARM STAY ACCOMMODATIONS

bdrm1 bunkbed livingrm

Perry Family Farm offers a fully equipped one bedroom apartment with modern conveniences. There is also the option of a bunk bed in the main living area for children and another room on the top floor with a private bathroom. One of the greatest treats of their apartment is the beautiful view from the private deck and upstairs bedroom.

deck bdrm2

 

SEASONAL HIGHLIGHTS

piglet goat duck

No matter which season you’re planning your next getaway, you’ll find enjoyment here at Perry Family Farm. Come in spring and you’ll get to see and play with the new piglets, lambs and calves in the field. Summers offer fresh farm cooked BBQs, garden produce, warm evenings and starlit nights. Does waking up to a brisk and colorful autumn morning sound like the perfect getaway? Then you’ve found a great place to enjoy the chilled mornings and beautiful fall foliage. If snow shoeing, skiing and a warm and cozy romantic night in is your ideal vacation then Vermont’s snow covered winters and a stay at Perry Family Farm should be next on your list.

houselights snowshoe

 

FARM FRESH

Perry Family Farm offers a variety of meats and produce for purchase including pork, lamb, beef, chicken, duck, goose, guinea fowl, eggs, honey, pullets and preserves.

chickens bees cattle

 

FARM GUESTS

Eco-friendly, relaxing and country charm are just a few reasons guests appreciate a stay at the Perry Family Farm.

snowshoe2 backlights icicles

“The Perry Farm is absolutely beautiful! Plenty of warm water, heat, wonderful kitchen for cooking, and they provided delicious Vermont coffee and milk. A nice scenic drive through the back roads of Warren and you're at Sugarbush.” – Rachel

“I cut the duck into parts, slow roasted the carcass for about 2 hours to render the fat out. Then I cooked the legs and the wings slow and low until the meat was falling off the bone. There is nothing better than duck cooked in its own fat. Then I pan seared the breast, finished them in the oven to medium rare and served with a blood orange, ginger, balsamic reduction. Served the whole thing with fresh steamed green beans and a medley of roasted carrots, parsnips and butternut squash. You would have been proud. It was fantastic!” – Rebecca

“We loved staying on James and Laura's farm -- only wish the stay could have been longer! The apartment was so comfortable with a great gas range stove, big refrigerator, plenty of living space and an ultra-comfy bed. We had access to their veggie garden and they provided us with farm eggs, coffee & bread for breakfast.” - Julia

 

GREEN EFFORTS

green Perry Family Farm LLC is committed to protecting the environment, the health and safety of our employees, and the community in which we conduct our business. It is our policy to seek improvements throughout our business operations to lesson our impact on the local and global environment by conserving energy, water and other natural resources; reducing waste generation; recycling and purchasing recycled-content products; and reducing our use of toxic materials or production of toxic products and byproducts. We are committed to environmental excellence and pollution prevention through continual improvement and meeting or exceeding all environmental regulatory requirements.” green2

 

For more information and reservations visit the Perry Family Farm Stay profile or their website.

Photo Credit - Perry Family Farm

Cold Moon Farm Ducks Cold Moon Farm Barn

Nestled into a beautiful corner of Southern Vermont, Cold Moon Farm is a relaxing retreat with an array of activities for guests. Owners Ed and Irene Glazer have created an inviting place to vacation, along with activities like learning to bake bread, picking vegetables from the garden, observing the grazing goat herd, and telling stories around a campfire, just to name a few.Cold Moon Farm Kitchen

It’s often said that a kitchen is the heart of the home. Indeed, Cold Moon Farm was designed around its kitchen, which frequently serves as the gathering place for the entire farm. Guests enjoy daily fresh breakfasts, featuring eggs from the laying hens, bacon and sausage from Cold Moon’s own pigs, and raw goat milk from the farm’s herd. Add fresh-baked bread, Cold Moon Farm honey, and farm made yogurt, and you have a hearty morning start for anyone about to launch into a day of exploration.Cold Moon Farm Cooking Class

With professional appliances, all the necessary tools, and lots of storage and counter space, this is Irene’s dream kitchen, and she has generously made it available for culinary events, demonstrations, and classes. Farm stay guests, as well as individuals not spending the night, can pay a class fee and learn to bake bread, make cheese and yogurt, or harvest and prepare a farm-to-table dinner.

Cold Moon Farm AbigailIf you can tear yourself away from the amazing kitchen, there are plenty of farm animals to visit. The Glazers raise a herd of milking goats, and South Down Baby Doll sheep for their wool. Chickens and ducks provide eggs for the farm, and in the summer months there are chickens raised for meat. Finally, a breeding pair of Large Black pigs is expected to deliver their first set of piglets early this summer, which the crew at Cold Moon Farm is eagerly anticipating. Helping guests become acclimated to all this activity is Dave Meckes, AKA "Farmer Dave", the Farm and Operations Manager. He oversees the herd and the property, and takes guests on informative farm tours. You might see some wildlife, too. Georgia LoPresti Meckes, who does Marketing and Development for the farm, says, "Our pond is the perfect place to explore for frogs and to go for a refreshing dip!" Georgia writes a blog for the farm, and is the person behind the farm's social media presence.

Four guest suites make up the accommodations at Cold Moon Farm, and they all feature private baths and luxurious touches like TempurPedic mattresses, towel warmers, and tasteful Vermont decor. There are a variety of room types, for parties of different sizes, such as a Queen Bedroom suite that sleeps 2, a two-room Library Suite that can sleep up to 5 people, and a Family Room that can accommodate 7.

Cold Moon Farm King Room

The King Room

Cold Moon Farm Family Room

The Family Room

Other activities at Cold Moon Farm include "Pick Your Own" weekends, where guests receive a farm tour, and can purchase a special bag that they fill with the freshest vegetables from the picking garden. There are also guided hiking trips, and visitors to the farm will find canoeing and kayaking at nearby Jamaica State Park. Sustainable weddings, and yoga retreats round out the farm's offerings.

To meet Ed and Irene, and learn more about Cold Moon Farm, watch this video slide show from the farm, below, and then visit their listing on Farm Stay U.S.!

(All photos courtesy Cold Moon Farm)

I admit it... I can be a bit of a daydreamer. I guess, working on a farm, I should call it woolgathering! Helping to run the Farm Stay U.S. website is the perfect sort of job for doing a little in-my-head-dream-vacation planning, with so many beautiful photos of farms, ranches, and vineyards to admire.

Fall FoliageFall is my absolute favorite time of year. The weather is perfect and the colors are glorious.

There is pumpkin-flavored-everything.

Everything!

It's easy to immediately think of New England for fall travel, and who can argue? They have all that amazing autumn foliage for leaf peepers, and something about the region just screams crisp air and ruddy cheeks. It says, bonfires, like at Liberty Hill Farm in Vermont, or an afternoon spent antiquing before spending the night at Cold Moon Farm. Break out the scarves and boots and let me tromp around the barn!

Fall is cranberry harvest time all across the United States. Here in the Pacific region, there are cranberry bogs to be found in the town of Grayland, Washington, which is a little under two hours from The Inn at Crippen Creek Farm in Skamokawa. Imagine a day snapping photos along the Washington coast, and winding down with a 5-course gourmet meal on the farm, cooked for you by the professional chef-owners.

Geronimo Trail Guest RanchHow about a high-desert getaway this time of year? New Mexico, too, has stunning fall foliage and sweeping vistas. I'd choose to enjoy the views from horseback and take a trail ride through a piece of Native American history at Geronimo Trail Guest Ranch in Winston.

Alas, I can't spend the entire day with my head in the clouds... just one more peek at our regional guide and I land on the South (East South Central) region, with an eye on Kentucky for some antebellum charm. An afternoon spent harvesting apples at The Farm LLC, followed by some stargazing, brings my daydream to a pleasant close.

Where would your daydreams take you? Leave us a comment!

(Photo Credits: morgueFile, Geronimo Trail Guest Ranch)

Wow, what a great month we had in July for new members! Please join us in giving a hearty welcome to these newly listed farms. Here are some quick highlights from their profiles:

Chantilly Ridge Alpacas

Chantilly Ridge Alpacas

Port Orange, Florida

We are a family run full service Alpaca Farm (meaning we do all the work), located in beautiful Port Orange, FL. Come and help out on the farm, feed and play with the Alpacas, chickens, bunnies. Relax by a beautiful pool (get a wonderful massage, optional ) or visit the many interesting places Daytona Beach and surrounding areas have to offer.

Pholia Farm

Pholia Farm Goat Cheese Dairy

Rogue River, Oregon

Go glamping in a charming, refurbished 1970 Airstream Land Yacht in a private setting on a real goat cheese farm. Participate in milking and farm chores if you like, feed baby goats in the spring, or hike our forest trails. The farm is completely off the power grid and nestled on 24 acres of forest and farmland. It is family run, sustainable, and organically managed.

Sweet Retreat

Sweet Retreat Guesthouse and Sugarworks

Northfield, Vermont

The guesthouse is perfect for short or extended vacations. To get you started, we stock the guesthouse with ample breakfast fixings for your first morning meal. We invite you to help yourself to fresh veggies from our lush garden in summer, and to complimentary maple syrup from our sugarhouse year round throughout your stay.

Harvest Village

Harvest Village

Leroy, Michigan

Harvest Village, an organic, centennial farm features natural meat products from grass fed cattle and sheep; pastured heritage pigs; free range heritage turkeys; and free range chicken eggs.

Spiritwind Farm

Spiritwind Farm

Lebanon, Maine

Beautiful and private historic farm in southern Maine. I raise English Shire horses, Nubian and Nigerian goats, chickens, and pigs. Delicious Chevre cheese and luxurious goat milk soap are products from my goats. Almost everything I serve is from the garden or from my animals. The animals are all treated humanely and they live happily and freely on the farm.

Flamig Farm 2

Flamig Farm

West Simsbury, Connecticut

Over the past 30 years, driven by Nevin Christensen's Eco-environmental vision, Flamig Farm has grown from a small egg, organic vegetable, and strawberry operation to a richly varied, education and entertainment, farm complex and petting zoo.

Newton Farm

Newton Farm

West Kill, New York

Set in a high mountain valley, in the heart of the Catskill Region, Newton Farm Collective is a small market garden organic farm on 50 acres of rolling pasture and woodland.The farm dates back to the 1840's and retains all of its charm and curiosity, the setting is truly tranquil and peaceful.

Why Vacation on a Farm?

We asked our farmer, Kim Goodling of Grand View Farm Vermont, whether we could 'borrow' her blog post. We feel she clearly sums up what many of us have observed for the reasons our guests seek the farm stay experience. 

The events of the past two days has caused me to ponder why people choose to stay on a farm for their family vacation and why our family opens our home, lives, and farm up to complete strangers. As I think back over all the guests we have had since this spring, there seems to be two motives behind their spending time with us:

 

Grand View Farm - logo1. The first set of families want to support small family farms, and they are here to lend a helping hand where needed. They recognize the hard work involved in farming and they want to experience it, first hand.These parents have thoughtfully chosen to bring their children to our farm, so that they can experience life "outside of their comfort zone."

Their children have worked in our garden and greenhouse, and have tended to our many animals. These families have taken in with gusto, the fresh air, dark starlit nights, beautiful sunsets, fire flies, naps on the porch, weaving and felting lessons, the babbling brook, amazing mountain views, our wooded trails, and the adventure of traveling on dirt roads.

 

2. The second set of families seem to be on a food adventure! These families live, for the most part in large, bustling cities where the bulk of their groceries are purchased from the market around the corner. They express a "disconnect" with the source of the foods they eat, and they want very much to make that connection. Grand View Farm - eggs

Some of their children have never seen vegetables growing, or have given thought to how food is raised and produced. They do not know that an asparagus grows up out of the ground, and that peas grow from a vine in a pod. They do not know that hens lay one egg a day, and that it takes 40 gallons of sap to produce one gallon of maple syrup. They have never seen piglets racing around, chasing one another, or heard the tiny peeps of small chicks.

These parents have chosen to stay on a farm where food is raised, and to visit neighboring farms who do the same. They see Vermont as setting the standard for high quality foods. Grand View Farm - garden produceTwo sets of our guests, have enjoyed visiting some our friends' larger market gardens. They call ahead to place an order with the farm, and then drive over to pick up their food. An added bonus for driving out to the farm, is to get a personal tour of the farm and to meet some of Vermont's finest, most knowledgeable farmers.

They revel in the idea of being able to eat vegetables that have just been picked, and they are amazed at how fresh everything tastes. We share with them the secrets of where to find the best goat's milk cheese, the best organically grown meats, and the locally brewed beers. Then, we provide a grill for them to cook their dinner while taking in the mountain views.

Grand View Farm - on the grill

Whether here to help with chores, or to enjoy a feasting vacation, both types of families have one thing in common; the parents want to spend time with their children. These parents could have chosen to stay in resorts with all the amenities, pools, televisions, internet access, and numerous kid engaging activities just outside their hotel door.

Instead, they chose to come to our farm, to work together alongside a farming family, to visit with and make friends with farmers who care about how food is grown, and to help their urban raised children make connections that would otherwise be impossible. They have spent 24 hours a day with their children, embracing rural Vermont farm life, and thoughtfully planning each day's adventure, whether exploring the far reaches of Vermont tourist spots, or the dirt road outside our front door.

 

Whether it's Vermont or a farm or ranch stay in some other state, we truly believe that the connection made with our guests, both personal and agricultural, benefits us all in the long run. Our goal here at Farm Stay U.S.: to bridge the urban-rural divide one night, one meal, one family at a time.

liberty-hill-vacation

Liberty Hill Farm forms a lovely bucolic picture: a 102-cow dairy and inn nestled along the White River between the steep hills in Central Vermont. There's a tall red barn where guests can try milking a cow or feeding the calves. There's a cozy 1800s farmhouse where guests sleep, eat two home cooked meals a day, and relax, either in the comfy sitting room or on a rocker on the roomy porch. There's also an abundance of nature to enjoy - swimming, tubing and fishing along the White River, hiking and biking through the Green Mountain National Forest, and berry bushes and flowers growing on the wild pieces of the property. In winter, opportunities abound for both cross-country and downhill skiing.

liberty-hill-farm-scene

Beth and Bob Kennett have owned Liberty Hill Farm since 1979. Their two grown sons have recently come back to work on the farm as well. The farm is a proud member of the Cabot Creamery Cooperative, makers of "The World's Best Cheddar" according to a spate of cheese competition awards. Liberty Hill Farm itself has also garnered a suite of awards: in 2008 it was designated as "Vermont's 1st Green Agritourism Enterprise." In 2010, the farm was among the few destinations selected for an Editor's Choice "Best of New England" award from Yankee Magazine. The farm has been consistently highlighted in the media, including USA Today, The Boston Globe, and ABC News.

These accolades are well deserved: Beth Kennett is an incredible hostess, and a pioneer of and charismatic spokeswoman for Vermont agritourism -- she's been hosting guests in her farmhouse since 1984.

bethkennett-liberty-hill-farm

I chatted with Beth as she and her friend Lois danced around the kitchen cooking up dinner for 15 guests. Beth regaled me with fascinating tidbits about the history and challenges of the dairy industry and about the incredible impact her farm stay has had on some of her guests. She told me about one man who arrived with serious doubts about spending time on a farm again, having grown up on one. This man, Beth told me, hugged her tightly and literally cried with gratitude as he left, as if the farm stay at Liberty Hill had allowed him a true emotional release. Another guest has visited every year since she was a small child, and now brings her own children for summer vacations to the farm.

Beth loves to cook, and she treats guests to two homemade meals a day featuring Cabot dairy products and food from her neighbors' farms. The dinner menu includes mouthwatering fare like cheddar biscuits, maple cranberry chicken, rice pilaf with wild ramps, and maple pumpkin ice cream for dessert.

liberty-hill-house

Liberty Hill Farm also hosts wonderful knitting retreats oriented towards cancer support and charity - knitted items are often donated to local hospitals and organizations.

Liberty Hill Farm can host up to 17 guests in the farmhouse. Rates (includes lodging, breakfast, and dinner) are $98 per adult, $75 per teenager, $54 for children under 12, and kids 2 and under stay free. For more information on Liberty Hill Farm, visit their Farm Stay U.S. page.

Fun in Vermont

Shearer Hill Farm

Vermont has a long history of inviting folks to visit their family farms.  The state even has a site called Vermont Farms! that lists activities on farms and farms that offer lodging.

So it is not surprising to see a wonderful video on YouTube that highlights one of our member farms, Shearer Hill Farm.  This video walks you through a day on their place from breakfast to tapping maple trees for syrup.  There's even a side trip you can take to Adams Farm to milk the goats!

Probably longest in the business, and one of the best known stays not only in Vermont, but also in the country is Liberty Hill Farm, where they raise prize-winning Holstein cows, allow kids to interact with calf feeding, and sit you down to farm family meals. We think Lareau Farm also sounds fun with its flatbread oven and history as a farm since 1794 (gosh, right after the Revolution!).

There are working dairy farms, alpaca farms, maple sugar, and sheep farms throughout Vermont.  It's impossible to list all the wonderful farm stays here, so check out Farm Finder on the Farm Stay U.S. site, search Vermont, and you will find at least 30 choices for your next trip.  You can even hit the 'Map These Results' button to plan your route. This (obviously) works for other states you might be planning to visit.

Come out to the country.  Stay on a farm!